Flexible screens could be in tablet's future
Much of the talk surrounding the tablet design these days is whether smaller is the way to go. This, however, is likely to be a short-lived debate, as some researchers are already looking on to the next stage in tablet fashion.
According to Reuters, that next stage may be flexible, tactile screens that can be folded and stored not in a briefcase or a purse, but in one's own pocket. This would take the tablet computer's portability to a new level and could introduce even more interesting possibilities for the technology.
Lin Zhong, a professor and researcher at Rice University, tells the news provider that one development that may come out of flexible screens is the wearable computer, which allows the user to keep the device on his or her body as if it were an accessory. This sort of technology is unlikely to hit the shelves anytime soon, but if and when it does, it could redefine the way people interact with their devices.
"We should think beyond just the touch-screen device," said Zhong says, according to Reuters. "Why do we have to hold tablets, carry many displays? We should think about wearable computers."
This development is still in the very early stages, so it is unclear what the end result will be. Many experts have said tablets and PCs will be viewed as complementary devices in the near future. However, if a wearable computer does emerge, it may eliminate the need for both devices.